7 Quick Takes about eating bugs at Ivy League Christmas parties and the sounds of Lino Rulli’s homeschool takeover

— 1 —

xmas cards collage 2014 sm 7 Quick Takes about eating bugs at Ivy League Christmas parties and the sounds of Lino Rullis homeschool takeover

We still don’t have a Christmas tree. I just walked by a broken Advent candle in the toy pile next to a naked Barbie. But it’s all good, because I GOT MY CHRISTMAS CARDS DONE! (Not “done” like “sent,” but “done” like “we got a decent picture and the newsletter is written.”) I’m so excited!

As I say every year, this is one of my very favorite holiday traditions. I love getting everyone’s letters and pictures each year. Even for the families that I already know what’s been going on with them, I love re-living the year with them through their letters, and having a picture to display in our living room.

If you’re a fellow Christmas card fanatic, put me on your list! Send me your card at:

1411 West Ave. #200
Austin, TX 78701

I can’t wait to read them!

— 2 —

Joe and I went to a holiday party for the Ivy League club of Austin this week. It was a cool dinner party with Dinnerlab chefs serving experimental Oaxacan cuisine.

For members of the “Ivy+” group, the nametags included the name of the school you attended. For those of us whose schools didn’t make the cut, that part of the nametag was blank. So I improvised:

7qt282 nametags 7 Quick Takes about eating bugs at Ivy League Christmas parties and the sounds of Lino Rullis homeschool takeover

— 3 —

I had an ominous feeling when I saw the words “Oaxacan” and “experimental” used in the same sentence. As someone who prefers my “Mexican” food to originate no further south than Houston and be comprised of nothing more exotic than tortillas smothered in cheese, I think of interior Mexican food as being a little rough to begin with. So I suspected that any attempts to make it even more exotic were going to spell doom for my tastebuds.

Most of the food turned out to be great, but the appetizer was…wait for it…FRIED GRASSHOPPERS.

After confirming that there was no cilantro on them, I agreed to try a bite (because, yes, I do find cilantro to be more disgusting than dead bugs).

This is where I’m supposed to say that it was actually pretty good. It wasn’t. It was exactly what I thought eating a fried insect would be like: crunchy in all the wrong ways. Strange, oddly fishy taste. Troublingly prickly feeling of the legs. UGH.

To quote Joe from a time that I made him try soy bacon: “I can erase the taste from my tongue, but I can never erase it from my mind’s tongue.”

— 4 —

The room where the dinner took place had low lighting, so I actually didn’t get a good look at the grasshoppers as I was eating them. When I got home and looked at the picture I posted on Instagram, I almost vomited when I saw the details that my iPhone flash and the Instagram filter brought out:

7qt282 fried grasshoppers 7 Quick Takes about eating bugs at Ivy League Christmas parties and the sounds of Lino Rullis homeschool takeover

(Although the comment thread in response to the picture made the whole thing almost worth it. Almost.)

— 5 —

7qt282 lino rulli homeschooling children 7 Quick Takes about eating bugs at Ivy League Christmas parties and the sounds of Lino Rullis homeschool takeover

Remember how I mentioned that Lino Rulli homeschooled my kids when he brought his radio show down here? That audio is now available, and you’ll definitely want to hear it.

Not only can you hear his efforts to teach Geography and Texas History, but we discuss why I started homeschooling in the first place. It was a super fun segment (it’s the first 20 minutes of this “best of the week” podcast):

(Email readers, click through to see the player.)

— 6 —

Since I am evidently incapable of writing blog posts without linking to Dan Lord these days, let me get that out of the way in this one to let you know that Dan’s latest wine guide is up. As with everything he writes, it’s awesome and hilarious. And you will want to know which wine he’s talking about when he says: “Do not buy this wine. And, if you do, don’t drink it. And, if you do, consider us enemies.”

— 7 —

Today is the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe! If you’re not familiar with the fascinating story behind this image, treat yourself to this video:

(Email readers, click through to see the player.)

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Looking for the 7 Quick Takes blogger linkup? It now has a fabulous new home over at Kelly’s place!

7 Quick Takes about eating bugs at Ivy League Christmas parties and the sounds of Lino Rulli’s homeschool takeover

7qt282-fried-grasshoppers

— 1 — We still don’t have a Christmas tree. I just walked by a broken Advent candle in the toy pile next to a naked Barbie. But it’s all good, because I GOT MY CHRISTMAS CARDS DONE! (Not “done” like “sent,” but “done” like “we got a decent picture and the newsletter is written.”) I’m so excited! As I say every year, this is one of my very favorite holiday traditions. I love getting everyone’s letters and pictures each year. Even for the families that I already know... Read More

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